A Healthier Year… Hopefully

So I decided that I really want to get back on my diet. I have gained back almost all of the weight that I lost three years ago. I cannot keep going down this path. Hopefully I will get my depression in line again and I know that will help a lot. It’s incredible what stress and depression can do to the human body. So I am willing to write about my journey on here and even share some very humiliating photos, but I want to do this because I know I’m not the only person in this situation. And please don’t think this is because I am one of those people who make a New Year’s Resolution to lose weight. I’m doing this to get healthy since I don’t believe in making resolutions because they cause you to fail.

Tonight I decided to try something new. My boss brought in leftovers of some stuffed bell peppers that she made and it looked and smelled incredible. Knowing that I had to go to the grocery store, I decided to make my own thing using most of the ingredients my boss said that she used. This was so easy to make and used all fresh ingredients. Here’s what I did:

1/2 green bell pepper, diced

1/2 orange bell pepper, diced

1/2 medium sweet onion, diced

3 stalks of celery, diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 package Extra Lean Jennie-O Ground Turkey

2 ripe tomatoes, diced

about 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

about 1-1/2 tbsp Herbs de Province

1 cup brown rice, cooked

1 cup baby spinach leaves

In a large skillet over medium heat, heat the olive oil. Once heated sauté garlic, bell peppers, onion and celery. Add salt and pepper. Let them sweat for a few minutes until the onions are transparent. Add ground turkey and cook through. Add Herbs and rice. Cook for a few minutes to let all of the flavors absorb. Add the tomatoes just before removing from the heat. Add more salt, pepper or Herbs if needed. Serve hot over spinach. I added a little ketchup to mine just for a little sweetness and my grandma put some in a couple of tacos.

I can’t tell you what the nutritional values are. I don’t measure when I cook so sometimes it’s hard to get an exact recipe out of me. My great-grandmother and grandpa taught me how to cook and I swear it’s the Italian in me. I ate a smaller portion than what I would normally eat and it filled me up.

This year I want to eat healthier and buy more fresh produce than I used to. It might cost a little more but it will be healthier.

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Tinkyada Spinach Spaghetti

So I realized that I’ve been neglecting this blog. It truly is hard to manage four (yes you read that correct) blogs especially when you’re working full-time and one blog has a post-a-day challenge right now. So I decided that I will kick off this year for this blog by doing a product review.

People are constantly asking me how to feel like you get the proper nutrients in a gluten-free diet and still feel like you are eating normal foods. You just have to look around your grocery store or health food store. The internet is even good with finding companies that will ship products to your house.

I am part italian decent and one of the things I absolutely love is spaghetti or just pasta in general. When I was diagnosed I felt like I had lost the options of enjoying that part of my heritage. Then I found gluten-free pasta by Tinkyada in my health food store. One day I went in to get some pasta and saw that they had spinach flavored spaghetti noodles that I could eat. I didn’t hesitate and rushed home to make spaghetti. I don’t even really buy spaghetti sauce at the grocery store because it is very easy to make and I like sauce that has chunks of tomatoes in it.

This pasta is easy to cook up and it only takes about 15 minutes. Here is my easy spaghetti sauce that doesn’t really take much and most of the time people have all of the ingredients in their pantry (or at least I do).

1 lb buffalo, venison, ground beef, ground chicken or ground turkey

1 can diced tomatoes (you can used plain, fire roasted, garlic, italian seasoned or any that you find), do not drain

1 can corn (you can leave it out but I love corn), drained

1 small package sliced fresh mushrooms

salt and pepper to taste

dried oregano, basil, thyme, marjoram and garlic, use the amount that tastes good to you.

Sautee meat in a skillet until brown over medium heat and drain off fat. Add tomatoes with the juice and the rest of the ingredients and bring to a slight boil. Reduce heat and simmer until heated through. Pour over pasta of choice add cheese if desired and serve.

Easy right? It doesn’t cost very much and makes quite a bit. This would be a good way of sneaking some veggies in for kids. You can add whatever you like or have on hand. Use the spices that you like. This is a recipe that can easily be changes to fit your tastes.